Reaping the Whirlwind Pt.3

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TPM Reader TF chimes in on Reaping the Whirlwind …

It was the email from a fellow Iowan that got me. The deal for me is simple: I am a white, middle age son of an immigrant who ultimately was pretty successful. As his son, I was given every advantage a person could ask for, didn’t take them all and have still been reasonably successful too. I grew up middle class and depending on how you define things, on the brink of upper middle class. I also grew up a Democrat. My parents were Kennedy Democrats and then Johnson Democrats and then Humphrey Democrats. And then the Vietnam War jostled some of those things around for a few years. My father, the immigrant, is fiercely patriotic (and so am I) and his military service combined with his experience as a youth in Europe have made him a very middle-left person.

I am a progressive Democrat, unlike my Father. When President Obama ran in 2008, I was hoping for more progressiveness on issues and startled that so many of my progressive friends were rabid supporters. I am happier than them now because President Obama has pursued progressive policies that I would never have imagined. I also have fumed at the right-wing attacks on Obama and easily reconginzed the politically stupid nature of the attacks. My Dad lived under fascism and communism, so he can tell anyone how ridiculous the fascist-socialist attacks are.

I also understand both intellectually and in other ways how racist the attacks are. I bridled at the misogyny directed at Secretary of State Clinton during her campaign and kind-of hope she runs again just so we can jam that up their sexist butts.

To me, President Obama represents a huge surprise in that I didn’t believe that an African-
American would be elected president until late in my lifetime, if at all. And he is a wonderful person and speaker and bundle of policies that make me happy. I understand the racism, but I never personally FELT the racism. I have never had to relate to this on a personal level.

This series of posts is one of the most important I have ever read. The Republicans have used wedge issue after wedge issue. These were successful in my early political days as my candidates got hammered in the late 70s through the 80s. Finally, they wedged themselves into a corner. I know that because I can count votes in my precinct, state and country. But again, as a white middle-aged guy in Iowa, I have not looked at this from a meaningful perspective: none of these attacks have been on me, just on my candidate and
policy preferences.

I have been most moved by these emails; I have been surprised at their emotional effect on me. Publish as many of these as you can. This is a great service to everyone.

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Josh Marshall is editor and publisher of TalkingPointsMemo.com.
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